Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Warm Weather Worries


Sad news here!  Now is the time for ticks and mosquitoes. 
Tell your mom to check you for ticks. There is a bumper crop of ticks here in Arizona because of our warm climate. We never had many ticks before so not sure why mom is going crazy with tick search and destroy.  So what are ticks?

Ticks are parasitic arthropods that feed on the blood of their hosts. They are attracted to warmth and motion, often seeking out mammals – including dogs. Ticks tend to hide out in tall grass or plants in wooded areas waiting for prospective hosts. Once a host is found, the tick climbs on and attaches its mouthparts into the skin, beginning the blood meal. Once locked in place, the tick will not detach until its meal is complete. It may continue to feed for several hours to days, depending on the type of tick. On dogs, ticks often attach themselves in crevices and/or areas with little to no hair – typically in and around the ears, the areas where the insides of the legs meet the body, between the toes, and within skin folds. Most species of ticks go through four life stages - eggs, larvae, nymphs, and adults. All stages beyond eggs will attach to a host for a blood meal (and must do so on order to mature). Depending on species, the life span of a tick can be several months to years, and female adults can lay hundreds to thousands of eggs at a time. 

The dog is a natural host for heartworms, which means that heartworms that live inside the dog mature into adults, mate and produce offspring. If untreated, their numbers can increase, and dogs have been known to harbor several hundred worms in their bodies. Heartworm disease causes lasting damage to the heart, lungs and arteries, and can affect the dog’s health and quality of life long after the parasites are gone. For this reason, prevention is by far the best option, and treatment—when needed—should be administered as early in the course of the disease as possible. Call your vet today about prevention and yearly labs. 

Here is a link for more information on heartworm:


Here is a link to how to find and remove a tick:

Here is a link to more information on tick prevention:

Please check with your vet about prevention medication. They know what medication your dog is on and what will be safe to use on your pet.
Our mom uses diatomaceous earth (food grade) and it works well for us. You can find it at your favorite pet store or feed shop.
Bobbie, Julee, and Welsie

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